|Recently I went to a wonderful exhibit at the Concord Museum in historical Concord, Massachusetts. The exhibit was called Family Trees, a celebration of children's literature. Throughout the museum, trees were decorated to celebrate the spirit of various illustrated children's books. Unfortunately, photos were not allowed in the museum, so I can only tell you how enchanting these trees were.|
In the main hall, a large tree was decorated with felt ornaments made by Clare Beaton, the author and illustrator of One Moose, Twenty Mice. The ornaments were delightful, embellished with buttons, beads and sequins, which make the illustrations in the book look temptingly tactile! I couldn't resist buying the book!
Some of my other favorite trees were decorated to celebrate the books The Fabrics of Fairy Tales (a book I already own), retold by Tanya Robyn Batt and illustrated by Rachel Griffin, In Grandma's Arms by Jayne C. Shelton, illustrated by Karen Katz, and My Garden, written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes.
I think my avid interest in children's books comes from my years as a primary school teacher, as well as the love of books my daughter Kate and I read together when she was a child. To this day, she has sealed plastic boxes of her childhood books stored in our attic, waiting for the day when she settles into a permanent home with a large wall of bookshelves.
And I have a small collection of my own of kids' books illustrated with fabric or cut paper. I love, love, love to take them out and pour over them! Here are two of them:
I confess that it has long been on my wish list to write a children's book of my own, with fabric art or cut paper illustrations. There are so many ways to self-publish these days it is becoming a feasible dream.
Perhaps in 2011.....!!